If you have the idea that Microsoft Office is coming to iPad your not alone. The blogosphere is rife with sources and claims that Office for iPad is real, and it's coming this fall/early winter. One problem. Microsoft hasn't officially said jack squat about Office coming to iPad. Now for the bad (or good) news. Office for iPad isn't likely to ever arrive.
Office for iPad may be running around in Microsoft's hallways, being actively worked on, if not ready for launch. In fact, from the New York Times to Business Insider, everyone has sources from within Microsoft - or close to Microsoft's Office team - claiming Office for iPad is real, and it's coming.
Clearly, Microsoft wants the Office for iPad message out there, but unofficially so, but Redmond has been keen about making sure no one company official states it is actually arriving for the iPad. Thus Microsoft can pull the rug out from the whole idea, pushing how Office is included with Surface - for free! As weeks and months go by with Surface being launched with Office, yet no iOS version available for iPad, questions will travel to Redmond as to when the iOS version will arrive? The official Redmond answers will be something along the lines of the company never stating anything about Office coming to iPad.
Make no mistake, it's all about the Windows division controlling Microsoft. Surface RT is a huge hedge as to whether the Metro OS will really catch on (it certainly hasn't on their smartphones). And yet despite the Metro OS having nothing to do with Windows, none-the-less, it's a "Windows" product. It's only called a Windows product, because the Windows team controls it.
Office will only launch where and when the Windows team says it can. Windows management is interested in doing one thing, maintaining control of Microsoft. With Apple continuing to grow at amazing rates, don't discount the idea that the Windows team has also been pushing to eliminate Office from the Mac platform. It's all about Windows - period.
If Microsoft's Office team could have pulled their own strings it would have launched on Linux, Android, iOS and any other platforms over the years, delivering for the best products it could possibly create. Instead we get unofficial rumors of Office for iPad.
If Office does launch for iPad (miracle), it would be due to Windows management believing Office is so strong a product, giving it away for free on Surface tablet would create a huge Surface ground swell, ensuring Windows dominates and protects it's business territory with Windows. Thus, selling Office for iPad is no longer a threat. This begs the question:
- What would the forced bundled Office price be for iPad users?
Of course, for anyone under 40, the real question may loom much larger for Microsoft:
- How many people really care about, or use, Office anymore?
It's this latter question that may be the only reason we see Office on iPad, if at all, but don't count on it.
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